A Jupiterian’s Account of Planet Earth

 

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A group of aliens concluding their search for life on planet earth

The inhabitants of earth, and possibly most other planets, are generally extremely arrogant and dangerously limited. Earth citizens have the audacity to claim that a planet like jupiter is very unlikely to support (intelligent) life because of its extreme weather, high radiation levels and the soaring atmospheric pressure levels. Planet Jupiter is mostly gaseous but with a solid core.

Well, here is what i believe is a Jupiteran scientist’s account of Planet earth (translated and adapted to English):

The odds of finding life on planet 6772 are drastically low. The planet has an extremely thin atmosphere with atmospheric pressures so low, not very dissimilar to those of outer space,  that would cause the  instantaneous death of any organism that ventures into its realms without hydrogen protection. The temperatures there are agonizingly cold allowing for the formation of huge amounts of  hydrogen dioxide (H2O) in a liquid form, which is the reason the planet looks mostly purple in our telescopes. H2O is severely corrosive and lethal; its fumes which are abundant in 6772’s atmosphere can cause instantaneous death to any known life form after 2 or more Jupiterian seconds of contact. The temperatures are some times so cold, the liquid water turns into a solid form, called ice. The atmosphere also contains high levels of the toxic gas oxygen which is known to vigorously react with our genetic materials. The gravity is too weak and the radiation levels are way too low to generate the required energy for the development of any  intelligent, or for that fact unintelligent, life forms. We still don’t possess the technologies that allow us to venture into the extremely hostile environment of 6772, but our odds of finding life on the sun where there is an abundance of pure hydrogen, and where surface temperature levels might be just right to support the evolution of life as we know it.

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Brain Altering Technologies

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The development of communication technology is growing at speedy rates and our understanding of the human brain is increasing pretty quickly too. It’s no big news that very soon, very possibly in our life time, we will possess electrical tools that can alter the human consiousness and possibly feed it information at instantaneous rates. The first prototypes will be simple though : they will illicit basic brain reactions that have been known to be altered using chemicals.

Altering the human conciousness is a process that has been happening for millenia with the application of psychoactive drugs from mescaline peyotes to cannabis plants. The electrical tools that will alter the brain will differ in their abilities in that they are more specific and efficient.

I would imagine that as these brain altering technologies (BATs) are being initally developed industrially for medical and other uses, they will leak out and the internet will buzz with rogue dealers selling electrical equipment that make you feel full so you lose weight, others that simulate intense orgasmic sensations and some will be selling equipment that give you that buzz before you hit a party. The use of these equipment will be shrouded with risk as they interact with delicate brain machinery that could go wrong. And there will be a new Pablo Escobar, an unrelenting business mogul who dominates the international empire of illicit brain ‘enhancing’ equipment as he prefers to call it. The establishment will fight the technology as hard as it can; research funds in that domain will suffer massive blows and progress of brain altering technologies will come to a halt due to the notorious war on BATs. Illicit drugs as we know them now are going to be a thing of the past with emergence of biotechnology that could achieve what no current drug could.

The establishment will use terrifying stories to intimidate the public from experimenting with brain technologies: An interview with a woman with a pixilated face and a pitched down voice describing sobbingly how her brain was hacked 13 times at the same night when she used a bogus mind altering chip, another crippled man describing how he snapped his spine as his orgasm generating chip got stuck and could not be deactivated for the enirety of 37 minutes.

The discrepancy between the potential of these technologies and their actual applications in life is going to be mind boggling.

The Multiple Personalities of Man

 

 

All people will change. Just like their appearance, their personality also will. I don’t believe that change is only a process that happens over long periods of time. We are very different people even at different parts of the same day. Look at your perspective before you go to sleep, and when you wake up. People set alarms at night expecting they are calling themselves to wake up the next morning. This generally fails, or at least doesn’t go according to the plan that has been set a few hours ago. This is simply because once you go into deep sleep, you would have just killed the man you were, and with waking up, someone new emerges. And that person will generally prefer to stay in bed for a few more minutes, or hours, unlike your predecessor who confidently set these alarms at night. As the day goes through, that new born personality will mature and by night time it would fall into the same mistake as its predecessor. It will always think that it will simply go to sleep and wake up again. But no, a personality lives for one day only where it matures and then dies once deep sleep is triggered. But every generation that appears every morning will recollect the cumulative experience acquired by its predecessors over time throughout the day.

Personalities do also radically change throughout the day sometimes. A man’s perspective on life and living could dramatically differ in the seconds separating between lust and satisfaction; people become entirely different under the influence of chemicals that vary from anti-depressants to psychedelic medicines, and man will also radically change in response to a radical change in their total assets.

Something though remains constant, and that is not the personality of man, but rather the cumulative experience that all these personalities have independently acquired. And it’s experience, not personality, that make a person who they are.

We’re in it together

mozzie-with-temple-and-churchScientists some times take the idea of focus a bit too far. They focus too much on a certain issue and they get trapped in their own bubble. It takes courage, and sometimes a slight amount of insanity to burst that bubble and look at the bigger picture.

Malaria is a devastating disease that kills hundreds of thousands of people every year. Malaria can only be transmitted through mosquitoes. Seems obvious to most that eliminating the mosquitoes would solve that problem, and it actually might very well do solve it. Scientists have been working for decades on a potent poison that could kill all the malaria transmitting mosquitoes but to no avail; there are still just as many mosquitoes now as there have ever been.

However, let’s think about it from the mosquito’s point of view. Malaria is a devastating disease that causes the death of millions of mosquitoes every year. Malaria can only be transmitted through human beings.

A rogue mosquito might suggest that eradicating all human beings could stop the spread of the disease amongst its own species, but it will also fail, just like humans did in the past. One mosquito would think, only if humans could find a medicine that eliminates malaria in their own ranks, our lives would be spared too.

Humans didn’t yet find an effective cure for malaria in humans. But they might be looking in the wrong place. Maybe, finding a cure for malaria in mosquitoes  is simply much easier than curing humans suffering malaria. Eliminate Malaria in mosquitoes and it will spontaneously disappear among humans. Killing mosquitoes didn’t work. Helping them out in their own fight against Malaria might very well do – and then we would have eradicated the disease.

Sometimes we need to help our worst enemy to achieve peace in our and their communities. This doesn’t only apply to our dynamic with mosquitoes, but with each other as a human race too.

When you’re good, you don’t need to be useful.

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Watching these polished men playing snooker made me think: what is it that attracts people to watch and enjoy such games? And Why do people enjoy watching sports even if they didn’t play them.

Any sport will be enjoyed by people because of the inherent appreciation of skill and competence that humans have to each other. In a world where incompetence seems to be the norm amongst a lot of its inhabitants, the observation of the pristine performance and the shining abilities of people is a unique experience. It’s a process of observing the best that the human mind could offer : it doesn’t matter what kind of game it is, as long as it includes a competetive skill that differentiates people. The game itself doesn’t matter no matter how boring it might seem.

Create the best computer simulation of a football game if you want. The quality of such a game, no matter how great it is,  will never attract people to watch it with the same enthusiasm. The only thing that might attract them to watch it is the admiration of the brains behind creating such a simulation. People enjoy watching long computer games being played sometimes but that’s only because of the admiration of the abilities of those who hold the controllers.  Not because of the content of the game per se. Getting two computers to compete in any game, even if such computers dramatically outperform humans, is not going to attract any attnetion beyond the admiration for those who design such engines that can play such games.

Humans have an inherent desire to admire skill. Because excellent skill is a rare commodity. Whether you are Lionel Messi, Roger Federer or Gary Kasparov you’re attracting the same form of respect and attention from people. Not because you are doing something useful. But because you are displaying something extraordinary. The context is completely irrelevant when it comes to what’s extraordinary.

Quantum Thinking

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Quantum theory suggests that an electron could be simultaneously present in multiple distinct positions. However the human being can only grasp the existence of such an electron at one position at a time which is that the human decides to look at. You look at it in one position and it disappears in the other, and vice versa.

The process of biological thinking is led by the flow of electrons across our neurons, and shall therefore be influenced by the rules of quantum theory. Which leads us to the following: There is nothing wrong about having two polary opposing opinions about exactly the same subject and in exactly the same time; this in fact must be the norm.

You should feel totally comfortable about expressing your great admiration of Professor Noam Chomsky during the starter course at a dinner party and then expressing your indignation towards him before the mains have arrived. This state of ultimate self-contrariety and of total uninhibited cognitive dissonance is completely natural and shall not make your opinions any weaker; in fact it makes them much more interesting. Those who strive for cognitive harmony are torturing themselves as they only show such coherence on the concious level, whilst their unconcious mind is booming with disparity and flooding with inconsonance. And for that, they will deeply suffer. Consistency is indeed the last refuge of the unimaginative.

Linguistic Sexism

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The feminist movement has achieved a lot in promoting women’s rights. However, the struggle continues as he still enjoys an abundance of rights that she doesn’t. One of the issues is language where the word ‘man’ is used to describe individuals who could belong to either sex. Anyone with feminist values would be uncomfortable with the generic use of words such as spokesman, congressman, or policeman to describe individuals who could be of either gender. Those using these terms however could be excused as the word man is a simple single syllable three letter word and is much easier on the tongue than the two syllable six letter word “person”. No wonder people still use the easier terms despite strong efforts against using them. This is not sexist. What is sexist is the language itself which made the word ‘man’ so much easier than the word ‘woman’ and pushed every one to use it in excess to brand anyone who belongs to mankind, or shall we say human kind? To solve this issue of linguistic sexism, the best way would be to redefine the word ‘man’ to only mean person, and describe the male person with a word that has the same number of letters and syllables as woman. I would recommend for this purpose the use of the word ‘heman’ to refer to people possessing testicular genitalia.

On Size and Time

It is laughable for me the idea that the size of the entire observable universe, as we know it, holds any absolute significance what so ever. Whatever you find, no matter how monumentally large you think it is, rest assured it’s only a tiny fragment of a much bigger picture. The observable universe as we know it must be just an insignificant piece of a much infinitely large jigsaw puzzle that in turn is only one of a collection of billions of jigsaw puzzles.

Similarly, most will think of atoms as minuscule, but putting them into the context of the size of a single electron, the atom is a massive world just like what we think of ours. Perhaps entire civilisations live on there, atoms buzz with complex life systems that have their own struggles, their own passions and their own conflicts. The electron is also a gigantic entity when put into the context of the smaller, yet not understood, fragments that form it. There is no such thing as a smallest entity just like there is no such thing as a largest entity. Anything that there is, would be simultaneously monumentally vast and minutely small.

Time follows exactly the same trend. Time is infinite whether you look backwards where you will always find what’s older or you look forward, for there is always something newer. The cycle of size and time is infinitely beautiful, and it’s simply arrogant to try and draw a limit on either of them in either direction, no matter how old, no matter how small, no matter how large and no matter how new.

Perspective

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Each living being, whether a simple bacterium or a complex primate, can only perceive organisms inferior to it. Living beings, however, will continuously fail to comprehend the existence of more superior forms of life. We may understand some of the trends in which more superior life entities inflict their actions upon us through physics and chemistry, but we will never fathom the actual existence of such creatures. Every living species has evolved to perceive itself, through conscious or non-conscious methods, as the epitome of the life form, which is a necessity for the evolutionary process. A seemingly disgusting parasite thinks of itself and of its own species exactly what I or you would think of ourselves or of our own species.